Friday, October 22, 2010

Hines Affirms Spring Construction for City Center DC


Developers of downtown DC's last block of empty land are holding firm on their commitment to start building City Center DC, and confirmed in a statement released yesterday that construction could begin as early as April of next year. Colorado-based Archstone and Texas based Hines development plans for the 10 acre site were approved by the DC Council back in 2005, but have since stalled over financing and tenant prospects.

Hines representatives told DCMud in June they would begin redevelopment of the old
Convention Center site in the "first quarter of 2011," but have yet to announce a major tenant to occupy any of the space. The project should reach "substantial completion between May and September 2013," said Howard Riker, Vice President at Hines Development. Despite the lack of commitment, The Washington Post reports that Hines issued a statement yesterday saying it still planned to begin construction by next spring. Plans call for several hundred thousand square feet of retail space, more than half a million square feet of office space, 458 rental apartments, 216 condos and a 400-bed “high-end” hotel with its own 100,000 square foot retail plaza, under a 99 year lease from the city.

Hines has already chosen a general contractor team of Clark Construction and Smoot Construction, and has begun subcontractor bidding. Construction will begin first along H Street, building parking first, then office, saving residential for the last component.

Foster and Partners of London and DC-based Shalom Baranes serve as co-architects on the work. Designed to achieve LEED Gold certification, "the design of the landscape, office and condominium buildings relates to the specific sun and wind patterns and the climate. The site and the buildings will also incorporate solar shading, harness rainwater and water conservation and planting" according to Foster's website.

Washington, DC real estate development news

19 comments:

otavio said...

It was also stated in the Washington Post article that CityCenter DC would be able to get started on spec because an unnamed institutional investor is willing to provide between $750 and $950 million in funding for the project. This would be why the developers would be able to move forward without a tenant. The $750 to $950 million investment would cover the cost to build the six new buildings and the public plaza.

Anonymous said...

more glass walls to eradicate any local flavor our downtown might still have, great!

Critically Urban on Oct 22, 2010, 11:59:00 AM said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Critically Urban on Oct 22, 2010, 12:01:00 PM said...

Who says that downtown has any local flavor whatsoever anyway? It essentially doesn't. I love glass buildings. They're certainly better than most of those built in the 60s, 70s, and 80s, which make up the bulk of downtown.

Anonymous said...

Man, if you think this glass grid is any different from the hundreds built in the preceeding 40 years, I've got a (stone) bridge, never mind, it's too old school

Anonymous said...

Anonymous, what would YOU build them out of? Gingerbread?

I'd say architecture in the city has come a long way recently. At least most projects have street-level retail, human scaling, entrances and lobbies that admit a little light, rooftop access, environmental systems, etc., etc.

Not to say I love this project, but if someone is going to spend a Billion to build it, they're going to need to get ROI, and that means using all the space available.

Anonymous said...

How about stone or brick? Let's review, shall we...
You wouldn't have to spend so much energy keeping it cool or warm during the seasons.
It might age gracefully instead of looking dirty and grimy.
Maybe DC's downtown might look a bit different than say every other mid-century city on the planet.
Oh, people might generally like it more.

Besides that, I think it really looks cutting edge!

Anonymous said...

I am no architect, but it is my understanding that glass SAVES money overall. Huge savings on lighting. Modern glazing and sunlight in the winter helps keep heating costs down (greenhouse effect). Shades used to help keep it cool in the Summer.

You want to ship millions of tons of stone from where? You want millions of bricks made at enormous financial and environmental cost. And shipped. Making mortar and cement are terrible for the environment as well. All materials have their place, but for a large commercial development like this, glass seems like a reasonable choice.

Anonymous said...

i say downtown still has flavor.
we still have some beautiful old buildings. walk around a bit.

the design of citycenter is dull. maybe its efficient, but ugly is ugly. huge potential. big letdown.

Anonymous said...

Hopefully they get some decent food places in on the first floor. It would be nice if they start "bridging" between chinatown and Metro Center/Farragut/Dupont with mixed use developments that more efficiently use downtown during the non-work hours.

monkeyrotica on Oct 25, 2010, 7:25:00 AM said...

It's more cost-effective for developers to build fugly glass cubes with a 20 year lifespan than brick-and-mortar offices that will last indefinitely. That's why stripmalls look like they do: horribly dated within a decade. I predict this place will be torn down and replaced with yet another fugly glass cube within our lifetimes.

Anonymous said...

Why would you import stone from far away? And all those cauld joints need to be repaired a lot faster than mortar. Just compare the curtain wall on the Lever House in Manhattan with the Empire State Building curtain wall. If your materials life span is longer than the time it takes to build, you can't do better than natural materials. I also agree thay'll tear this down with in the decade. And that's the main reason to build it out of brick, stone, and beauty. Because beautiful buildings are less likley to be torn down, even if you by-pass all the local quarries and chose to import stone from China. No amount of technological gimmeckry will ever replace man's desre for beauty.

BTW, if you do tear down a building made of natural materials, you can at least landfill it and not have to declare it a toxic dump.

Anonymous said...

Its much nicer that what was previously there - the old convention center. Talk about a wall...

Anonymous said...

Yeah, glass is so toxic and they will definitely tear down a $1 billion development in about 10 years just to do it all over again...

Anonymous said...

at least add some spanish tiled roofs to dress it up.

Anonymous said...

IS THAT GLASS STRUCTURAL?

Anonymous said...

Why are they hiding the identity of the foreign investor?

Corporate Rentals DC on Feb 26, 2013, 7:45:00 AM said...

Id say architecture in the city has come a long way recently. I love glass buildings. They're certainly better than most of those built in the 60s, 70s, and 80s.

Logo Design Blog on Apr 19, 2013, 3:29:00 AM said...

Thank you once again for your love and willingness to share your feelings.

 

DCmud - The Urban Real Estate Digest of Washington DC Copyright © 2008 Black Brown Pop Template by Ipiet's Blogger Template